HMI just learned that Jerry and Renee Doan, who own and manage Black Leg Ranch in Sterling, North Dakota, won the first annual North Dakota Leopold Conservation Award® presented by the Sand County Foundation, in partnership with the North Dakota Grazing Lands Coalition, North Dakota Association of Soil Conservation Districts and the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association. This award honors North Dakota landowner achievement in voluntary stewardship and management of natural resources, . The Doans have developed their infrastructure so they can successfully practice holistic planned grazing, using with high animal impact, short grazing periods and long recovery periods to stimulate plant and soil health.
After Jerry completed his animal science degree at North Dakota State University, he took Holistic Management training to improve the rangeland, natural resources, wildlife, and business profitability. The Doans have 700 acres of cover crops which include a 20 species mix. They have also been no-till for over 15 years. Through these improved practices and holistic planned grazing, they have improved The wildlife and pollinator habitat and reduced winter grazing costs.
Rachel Bush, North Dakota Coordinator for Pheasants Forever noted that: “Black Leg Ranch, through their holistic approach to managing is providing that picture [of how healthy land maintains itself] to future generations.”
Another North Dakota Holistic Management family that was named as a finalist for this award was Ken and Bonnie Miller, who own and manage Miller Ranch in Fort Rice, North Dakota. The Millers use low disturbance planting methods, cover crops, and managed livestock grazing to build cropland soil and reduce their dependence on inputs.
Congratulations to the Doans! To learn more about how the Doans and Millers are integrating cover crops with holistic planned grazing practices, read the #151 issue of HMI’s IN PRACTICE.
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